The Future of Youth Humanitarian Values: A Paradigm Shift
Young people in the Far East are actively involved in the volunteer movement
Kamchatka’s volunteer movement is enormous now. [...] And at the same time, we have a school of nature conservationists helping young people understand what they want to protect. […] Some want to protect animals, some want to help protect the environment from garbage, and some want to help with other environmental projects. […] What do volunteers and environmentalists want? What is their ultimate goal? [...] In the 20th century, humanity caused great damage to nature. Now we have to work really hard to mitigate the resulting harm [...] to move on to new criteria for existence — Konstantin Korotov, General Director, Kamchatka Development Corporation.
We have a good capacity to work with young people, to realize their potential for values and patriotism. […] The key indicator for us was that when the pandemic started […] students were among the first to respond to volunteer movements to help the elderly, to deliver food to them, to provide assistance. They volunteered themselves and created their own student headquarters for the volunteer movement — Valery Protopopov, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) for the Far Eastern Federal District.
The state needs to make it possible for people to put humanitarian values into practice
Volunteering, or providing selfless aid to one’s neighbour, is a vital component of human nature. […] It is an inherent ability, and even a necessity. Our task is not to implant the habit; our task is to create the necessary circumstances for it to take place. [...] At present, the state is focussing a great deal of attention on this. [...] We believe that 80% of what needs to be done for the development of humanitarian values among the young, [...] is currently being done — Grigoriy Kuranov, Deputy Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District of the Russian Federation.
Family values should coincide with humanitarian values
Values, of course, are born and created in our families. […] It would probably be ideal to focus on and work with young children — Maria Afonina, Vice-rector for Educational Activities, "Senezh" Management Workshop.
At the beginning of the discussion, someone said: the schools expect children to arrive with certain values. We don’t expect children to arrive with certain values; we want to work with the family, and the most important thing for us is that the family’s values coincide with those of the school. […] So that we can move with the parents in the same direction, and so that we can hear and listen to the parents. […] The most important thing is for the school to be able to collaborate with the parents. Then, I think, if our values coincide, then we can talk about a good 21st century graduate with a certain set of competencies — Maksim Kilchevsky, Director, Secondary School No.14 (Vladivostok).
Determining the values that will be needed and in demand tomorrow
Family and children are the most important thing to young people. It is followed by financial security, the absence of financial difficulties, a career, physical and psychological health, personal self-realization, and creativity. These are the first five things that today's youth values most. What does tomorrow hold — Anton Serikov, Deputy General Director, Russia - the Country of Opportunities.
We presently have a great lack of some things. [...] The first is deeds, activity, results, work, creation. That is to say, a focus on action. The second is a moral quality, first of all, spirituality and patriotism [...] in the broad sense of the word. [...] And the third [...] is the development of humour — Grigoriy Kuranov, Deputy Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District of the Russian Federation.
Finding a way to establish humanitarian values from a young age
First, they (humanitarian values – ed.) need to be established. And what are humanitarian values, do our youth understand what they are? […] If we turn to the etymology of the word, humanism, humanitarian values are, first of all, people. […] But today's realities suggest that humanitarian values are spiritual and moral guidelines aimed at sustainable development. It’s about harmony. About the harmony of a person with and within oneself, about the harmony of a person with society, and about the harmony between a person and the environment. And all of these interconnections give rise to the values themselves. If they have been established, then naturally they will work. Therefore, the question must be posed differently: how can we establish them, from a very young age, within the family, and from scratch? — Veronika Leshchinskaya, Head of the Department of Information and Methodological Support for Environmental Education and Personnel Training, Roszapovedtsentr.
Conducting educational activities
The new changes to our national Ecology project are directly connected to eco-volunteering and environmental education. There are three important points. The first is that we really want to attract kids on a paid basis. […] The second focusses on events of environmental education, public scientific and practical conferences. […] The third entails attracting business to support our biodiversity. […] And this is also a kind of volunteering — Irina Makanova, Director of the Department of State Policy and Regulation in the Development of Specially Protected Natural Areas, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation.
The sooner we make it possible […] for young people to achieve their potential, the better. […] I think we have two tasks here. The first is achieving potential, this self-realization. If a person wants to achieve their potential in something that we call humanitarian or basic values, then our task as the authorities is to provide this opportunity. And the second is to teach certain things, certain criteria. [...] Nature is a universal mechanism that regulates itself somewhere, and our task is not to interfere with it too much in this process — Grigoriy Kuranov, Deputy Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District of the Russian Federation.
Providing youth with opportunities to achieve their potential, not only locally, but also on a more global level
We are thinking locally - how to develop patriotism, how can we [...] attract, not only to keep them from leaving Yakutia, but to keep them from leaving Russia completely. Yakutia is a leader in filmmaking, a leader in gaming, in the production of games. [...] There are people who might want to leave. But we are doing everything to keep the kids, our young minds, and mature ones too, here with us in Yakutia. What are we doing? We’re developing our projects not only within Yakutia, but also in cooperation with other regions. One such project is the Keeping Watch in Memory of Rzhev – The Far East project. […] We began developing battlefield archaeology. You can't do this in the fields of Yakutia, but the Rzhev district worked with us to develop battlefield archaeology — Valery Protopopov, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) for the Far Eastern Federal District.